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IBM Thomas J Watson Research Center

Location: 1101 Kitchawan Road, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598

Type of Facility: Research Campus

Number of Employees: 1,000 +

Member Since: 2007

Membership runs through: 2018

NYEL Contact: Nicolette Visalli

Facility Overview:

The IBM Thomas J Watson Research Center is the worldwide headquarters for the IBM Research Division. The facility consists of 882,000 square feet of space, which includes office space and lab space where employees carry out research in the physical sciences, computer sciences, systems technology and information services.

The facility has demonstrated its commitment to sustainable operations through their prior NYEL commitments, which have included decreasing the amount of municipal water used for their cooling towers by over 1 million gallons a year and increasing the efficiency of their lab hoods to enable significant energy savings.

The facility has a functioning certified ISO 14001 environmental management system.

Sustainability Commitments:

1. Decrease Energy used by Lab Hood Exhausts by 334 MMBTU per Year

IBM will decrease the amount of energy used by their lab hood exhaust systems over the next three years by continuously reviewing the performance of their existing lab hoods and making upgrades, such as installing internal baffles, automatic sash positioning systems, and replacing older hoods with low-flow hoods.

2. Decrease Total Municipal Water Use by 1 Million Gallons per Year

The facility will decrease their annual yearly consumption of municipal water by expanding their rain harvesting program, utilizing well water, and reusing diluted wastewater that is generated by their deionized water production system. This will also improve the resiliency of the municipal water supply in times of drought as the facility will allow for there to be more capacity for other uses.

3. Eliminate Styrofoam from their Dining Facilities

Styrofoam is commonly used in the food service industry to serve food on and to carry take-out orders. Unfortunately, Styrofoam is non-biodegradable and, as a result, has been taking up an ever increasing amount of space in our landfills. It also can end up in our environment as litter, where it doesn't break down.

To help solve this problem IBM is eliminating the 4,200 lbs. of Styrofoam a year that have been used in its dining facilities and replacing it with paper products that have at least 10% recycled content from Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certified suppliers.

4. Reducing Bottle Water Waste by 780 lbs. per Year

Bottled water has a large impact on our environment, which comes from the bottling process, transportation of water to consumers, and eventually the waste generated by the water bottles themselves. In order to decrease the amount of waste coming from bottled water IBM is replacing their water fountains with units that include dispensers to fill refillable water bottles and will encourage employees to bring their own reusable water bottles.


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